MP3 Players and Small Storage

I have a feeling we are definitely on the cusp of a storage revolution.  HDDs are at 1TB now.   SSD is retailing with diverse selection at 64GB, 126GB, and 256GB; 512GB is available, but absurdly priced.  Portable MP3 players are almost all using SSD storage and only a few hold-outs (like Apple) recognize that some people want an arsenal of music with them, not just a select set of their overall collection

I have been strongly thinking about getting away from the iPod (different story, different post), but my better senses are telling me to wait (blah blah… so is my wallet… blah blah).  I have a feeling that in a year there won’t be any HDD-based portable MP3 players any more and SSD will be reasonably affordable at “arsenal” capacity.

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About John

I write about technology interests, cooking, and my own writing (sci-fi and fantasy... sometimes both). I try to keep things light, but sometimes I get side-tracked on an issue that I feel strongly about. No offense is meant, I'm just like any other person who feels strongly about something when I write. View all posts by John

6 responses to “MP3 Players and Small Storage

  • jhimm

    Before I respond I want to be sure I understand the phrasing. Are you saying you believe Apple does not recognize that some people want an “arsenal” of music with them?

    • John

      I am saying that Apple is one of the few that sells devices with sufficient capacity to permit huge amounts of music to be stored on the portable MP3 player.

      So, they do recognize the desire for the figurative arsenal.

      Creative, Cowon, and Sony have 32 GB players.
      Archos, Apple, and Microsoft have 120GB players.
      Archos has a 250GB player.

      The bulk of the MP3 players out there now are sub-32GB. For people like me, that means I can’t have all of the music I might want to listen to. I’m a tad random in what I want to hear and don’t like to be constrained by small storage. I could also just be unique in the quantity of music I want to carry with me.

      • jhimm

        No, I’m with you. When I went from a 30Gb player to an 8Gb player (it was free with the new laptop) I just about lost my mind trying to figure out what to put on it and what not to put on it.

        I wonder what the sales statistics look like, though, because even Apple has clearly shifted their focus from the bigger, bulkier, HDD iPods to the smaller, lighter, thinner, SSD players.

        My assumption is that there simply aren’t enough people who want more than 30Gb to warrant heavy competition in a space that Apple has been dominating from the get go.

  • jhimm

    On a tangential line of thinking, if mp3 players can have this level of capacity w/o a hard drive, why are all the netbooks so pathetic in this regard?

    • John

      You can get netbooks with 16GB of storage in an SSD. More than that and the price would become uncompetitive. SSD technology is still pretty expensive. Several netbooks allow the use of SD, micro SD, or SDHC cards to expand the memory, but that only really can give up to 16GB more of space at the current technology (or what they companies are willing to sell right now).

      I suspect this is why many netbooks have switched over to using HDDs again. You can get a netbook with a 320GB HDD in it now (Samsung, ASUS, HP, and more vendors do this). I think they realized that the concept of a netbook is great, but people still want to store a lot of stuff on their local HDD.

      • jhimm

        It isn’t even necessarily about storage. I can get an iPhone for $300 with 32Gb of storage on it and its smaller, lighter, cheaper, has GPS and is a phone. All I give up is a keyboard I could never use anyway and some screen size. This is why netbooks confuse me so much. They really need to be tablets to make any sense. Otherwise they’re just smaller, cheaper, less useful laptops.

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